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I’m a bit of a paintbrush tart. They are the most important tools of my trade, and I’ve tried quite a few different types before settling on a favourite brand. I use Harris brushes. I’ve tried others and it isn’t always the case that the most expensive are the best, but by and large good quality brushes do the job better. I tried an expensive super fine bristle brush made by Dulux a while back, but didn’t like it at all. The bristles were too long and I found that it ‘slapped’ against the furniture, causing the paint to spray. The sheer length of the bristles made the brush very difficult to control and it just wasn’t for me.

Softer brushes are best because their brush marks are less obvious and their texture makes them more pliable – better for getting into corners. A lot of furniture painters use very wide brushes but I tend to use a medium width, and drop down to a 1 inch for the finer parts of furniture. I drop down to artists brushes for the really intricate bits. I don’t like to rush the painting bit, as it’s all too easy to make mistakes.

Although I always prefer to remove handles and hinges when refurbing furniture, sometimes they are so old that they just won’t budge. An artists brush is a must for painting around handles and hinges, and I tend to do these bits before moving onto the ‘big open spaces’ of furniture, as I find that I’m more patient at the beginning of painting than towards the end, when the kettle is beckoning me away from work.

Below is a pic of my brushes. Some I use a lot, some seldom. On average, I get through 2 or 3 a week. After a time the bristles splay and it’s time to throw them away, or trim them up so that they keep going a bit longer.

The slogan on the mug helps me focus!

A handy tip – instead of constantly washing your paintbrushes in between coats, pop them in a plastic carrier bag and wrap the plastic quite snuggly around the brush, especially the handle, it’ll stay soft for a day or two. Flatten the bristles so that they are a nice shape, ready for use with the next coat of paint. Of course if you’re changing to a different colour paint, you will have no choice but to wash your paintbrush.

Below is a pic of half of the armoire/cabinet I’m working on. The top half is mostly glass – it’ll be a miracle if it stays in one piece for the duration of the refurb!

The drawers will be painted, but I couldn’t find a spanner or pliers to remove the handles, so had to work around them until my hubby came to the rescue this evening.

At one point I tried to move the base, which is incredibly heavy and got my foot jammed underneath it! It was quite funny for the first 30 seconds and then panic set in as there was no-one around to help me get free. I did manage to eventually lift the base just enough to remove my foot from its grasp. No pain, no gain I guess.

Here is the French toile fabric being stuck in place

And here it is just about finished.